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German version

Enable_Viacam_(EN)

Windows

2000 / XP / Vista / 7 and up

Linux

KDE / GNOME

Language

CN, DE, EN, ES, PT, RU, TW

License

GNU / GPL (free)

Link

http://www.viacam.org

actual version

2.1.2

Update of this page made on May, 4th 2017.

Enable Viacam enables people who cannot use a computer mouse or trackball, to control the mouse pointer through small movement of their head. It also allows clicking/dragging. The functionality of a standard hardware mouse remains intact, which makes it possible to control the mouse arrow with Enable Viacam while clicking is done with a hardware mouse or a switch.

Prerequisites

  • Webcam capable of producing 30 frames a second
  • proper lighting
  • ability for controlled head movement


Functionality

Camera

Using Enable Viacam with a standard WebCam that should be able to produce 30 frames a second it is possible to translate head movements into movement of the mouse pointer. The movements don't need to be big, in fact tiny movements work very well, too.
It is possible to define an area in which the program looks for movement. Since rev. 1.7.2 Enable viacam supports multi-screen setups.


Clicking

Additionally Enable Viacam offers click-support. It shows the so-called click-window at the upper edge of the screen and shows several buttons to activate or deactivate automated clicking as well as buttons to choose what kind of click the user requires, be it right, left, double clicking or click-and-drag. To initially activate the click-window, it has to be activated inside the program options.
Enable Viacam utilizes the so-called dwell-click. To perform a click the user just has to stop moving the mouse pointer and wait for a short period of time (the amount can be defined within the program's options). Since it can be a little difficult to stop movement the options menu contains a function that helps performing this task by simply defining a dead zone.


Speed of clicks

Rev. 1.7.2 introduced the option to customize the duration of the mouse-down time of a click. Some games dont recognize clicks of less than 10 ms, so the maximum of 10 hms has been removed with the release rev. 2.0.1.


Games

Enable Viacam can be used within computer games, even in shooters though it might be a bit problematic to use the click-window as well.


Moving the Mouse arrow

For beginners it might seem impossible to move the mouse pointer accurately but I can assure you that it is just a matter of training and a finding the correct settings. Just don't give up right away. Small movement can be achieved by nodding up, down, left or right.


Demonstration video

http://youtu.be/eACGTm3wQCI

some advice

  • Starting in May 2017 Enable Viacam ceased to work for some users. It showed a black screen and 1 FPS. It turned out that the removal of Avast Antivirus solved the issue in some cases. Discussion of the problem on the Enable Viacam forum.
  • should you happen to experience seldomly occuring freezes or crashes with Enable Viacam, take a look at Restarter, a tool that monitors software and restarts it in the case of a freeze or crash. This can be helpful, if the user must fully rely on Enable Viacam and there's no caretaker to help restarting it.
  • some games have problems with eViacam's clickbar when it comes to fullscreen mode. In such cases it is advisable to switch off the clickbar.
  • to grant good performance it is necessary that the WebCam can see the user properly. Make sure the room is bright enough.
  • Frame rate will increase significantly when unneeded driver functions of the WebCam are disabled. Don't use picture optimization, color or brightness boost. Automatic exposure can kill frame rate.
  • Accurate movement is so much easier to achieve when the user can utilize a headrest.
  • On a PC with an Athlon XP1800+ processor (an old piece, indeed) Enable Viacam eats 70% of CPU-power (54% on a xp3000+). Browsing the web is no problem but eViacam slows down while sites are loading.
  • The Piaystation 3 Eye can be used as a webcam and is quite good with it. You need the driver.
  • If the left click of Enable Viacam doesn't seem to be recognized inside of a game you can simply use the options menu and set the mouse down value to a higher number. 10 milliseconds usually is a good value.

Good settings for minimum head-movement

  • X=22
  • y=18
  • accel.=0
  • standstill=6
  • jitter=5

Website

http://www.viacam.org

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